Transport Businesses May Not Be Achieving Their Full Potential
Transport firms say a lack of innovation is harming their potential
OVER a third of small and medium sized transport firms are unhappy with their current business performance, admitting that they could be more innovative and proactive when it comes to identifying growth opportunities.
The figure comes from the latest Close Brothers Business Barometer, a quarterly survey that canvasses the opinion of SME owners and senior management from a variety of sectors across the UK.
John Fawcett, Managing Director of the Transport Division at Close Brothers Asset Finance said: “While many firms are striving for growth our survey shows there are factors holding them back from achieving their full potential.
“Innovation is a critical part of many firms growth strategies and yet our survey has highlighted that the ability to be innovative is a stumbling block for many transport businesses. Just 29% of the companies we talked to felt that they are sufficiently innovative. As the economy continues to gather pace, we need to prioritise the creation of a business environment that encourages the commercialisation of new ideas.
“That means financiers investing in small business so they in turn can invest in the things that they need to be truly innovative – whether that’s research and development, new machinery, the latest technology or additional staff.”
The Business Barometer revealed that a fifth of transport firms surveyed intend to seek funding for growth within the next 12 months, but of that figure, 39% are concerned that their request for finance will be turned down by their bank.
Mr Fawcett continued: “We found that many transport businesses still aren’t aware of the full range of funding options available to them. In fact, almost half of those surveyed hadn’t heard of asset finance and 17% were totally unaware of any alternatives to traditional bank lending.
“That is why we are working with businesses throughout the transport sector to further understanding of the wider spectrum of finance options available so that firms will be well capitalised, able to innovate and in a position to proactively pursue growth opportunities,” he added.